Will Online Driving Exams Lead to More Florida Car Accidents for Teen Drivers?

by Carmen Dellutri on July 29, 2011

Sarasota car accident lawyerMotor vehicle accidents are the leading cause of teen deaths in Florida and across the United States. Moreover, while individuals aged 15 to 24 account for only 14% of the population, 30% of the total costs of car accident injuries can be attributed to them, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Given these alarming statistics, many are concerned that the state of Florida has renewed a program that allows new teen drivers to take their learner’s permit exam online.

As detailed by News-Press.com, Florida officials previously halted a six-year online testing pilot program when they determined about 40 percent of those who passed the exam online failed in person at the DMV. It was a failure rate the department deemed high, said its legislative affairs administrator, Steven Fielder. Yet, despite these concerns, Gov. Rick Scott signed the program into law last week.

Critics of the new testing law argue that the online exam eliminates the initiative to memorize the important rules of the road for fear of failing because the test is essentially "open book." There is nothing to stop teens from looking up every answer or having someone else answer the questions for them.

However, not all safety advocates see online testing as a bad idea. "We think this is a great opportunity," said Michele Harris, who specializes in driver education for AAA Auto Club South in Tampa.

"There are a lot more checks and balances built into the system this time," Harris said. "Ultimately, we want people to be safe on the road. This gives them an opportunity to get the education as well as the testing."

One thing is clear—given the less stringent testing requirements for new drivers, other forms of driver education will become even more important.

The Dellutri Law Group is focused on making bad situations better and putting lives back together. If you or someone you love has been seriously injured in a Florida motor vehicle accident, you may be entitled to compensation.

To learn more about your legal options, contact our experienced injury attorneys for a free consultation.


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